Blighted Cocoa Pods (image) Penn State Share Print E-Mail Caption A pod rot called black pod, caused by the fungus Phytophthora, spreads rapidly on cacao bean pods under conditions of excessive rain and humidity, insufficient sunshine, and low temperatures. It is a major disease limiting cacao production. Credit Andrew Fister, Penn State Usage Restrictions Non commercial use only Share Print E-Mail Disclaimer: AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of news releases posted to EurekAlert! by contributing institutions or for the use of any information through the EurekAlert system.